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Ben Cushing, Technologist for Federal Healthcare, and Brock Spradling, Manager for Federal Healthcare at Red Hat, spoke with Susan Sharer, FedHealthIT’s President, to examine this product from a technical perspective and considered Red Hat Business Optimizer’s potential for agencies, including VA and DoD, during the COVID-19 crisis.

A Snapshot

Red Hat® Business Optimizer includes an applied artificial intelligence (AI) tool that uses heuristics and known constraints to come up with an optimized solution within seconds. Think of the AI tool as an event planner that not only manages the seating arrangement but also accommodates specific personalities and food preferences, changing RSVP status, and so on. Now apply that to the health setting and imagine the AI tool’s ability to schedule a Healthcare team based on availability, skills, location and, risk profile.

The tool was developed using input from a Healthcare professional on industry- and situation-specific considerations. We used that input to create a tool that would quickly provide a comprehensive schedule.

The Technology

The Red Hat Business Optimizer is a planning engine that uses applied AI to model resources and constraints and automatically generate recommended solutions to overcome those obstacles. If the planner knows something about a particular team member’s personal health and potential risk, the planner could add it in, but if the planner does not know these details the tool does not have access to Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) data.

The technology is intuitive. Many hospitals use dedicated servers that we manage, which means the hospital does not need to perform any information technology (IT) tasks. A system integrator would be involved in final preparation—performing tasks like login access—but Red Hat completes IT tasks so hospitals and clinical centers can deploy Red Hat Business Optimizer quickly.

The Cyber Side

Because the solution carries non-sensitive information and the risk profile is low, users can run Business Optimizer in Red Hat’s dedicated environment. For users who require it, we have partners that can provide FedRAMP certified offerings.


Red Hat Business Optimizer can help solve a number of challenges. For telemedicine schedules with patients and providers scattered across the country, Business Optimizer can create accurate and appropriate schedules quickly.

VA and the DoD move people from one place to another according to their needs, so these agencies might face challenges with treatment facilities that use different automation technologies. Standardization can help improve efficiency and effectiveness. By standardizing on Red Hat Business Optimizer, which is deployable at multiple sites, VA and the DoD can remove the learning curve that often exists as people move by offering a common system they already understand.

The customer decides how much data to integrate. Red Hat Business Optimizer can import Excel files and export schedules depending on the user’s settings, so the automation tool can replicate patterns that facilities are using. Systems integrators can also fully integrate the product. Red Hat is not involved in the integration process, so facilities can either work with their integrator of choice or a trusted Red Hat partner.

For more information, visit Red Hat.

About Brock Spradling

Brock Spradling is a Senior Manager with Red Hat’s North America Public Sector Healthcare organization. He works with Federal Healthcare agencies, integrators and Red Hat partners to promote and define the use of enterprise open source solutions. Brock is passionate about the use of enterprise supported open source innovation for the betterment of Healthcare within the Government and our nation. 

About Ben Cushing

For two decades, Ben Cushing has been a leader in emerging technology solutions across multiple industries and is committed to radical innovation in Healthcare. Before joining Red Hat, he served as the Chief Technology Officer for MDLogix, a behavioral health IT firm supporting Johns Hopkins Medicine. There he architected and brought to market a behavioural health cloud platform for use with employer, Healthcare, and education markets.



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